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Warriors On The Water Program Makes Difference In Lives

Warriors On The Water Program Makes Difference In Lives Warriors On The Water Program Makes Difference In Lives

Montana Warriors on the Water created a positive change in the lives of 14 veterans during a trip in the state that ended at the Fort Peck Marina on Saturday, July 29.

Montana Warriors on the Water is comprised of local sportsmen and women, and veterans of the U.S. Military, partnered with local businesses, communities, and organizations, providing outdoor recreational therapy and opportunities to veterans at no cost to them.

Billy Hoverson, executive director of the organization, said the trip included picking veterans up at the airport of Billings and then several fishing stops for the veterans.

“There was a lot of healing,” Hoverson said of the experience. “The common thing is they didn’t know the type of healing they were going to receive on a trip like this.”

Veterans Rod Ford and Ryan Coles, each from Texas, said it was a time that they will not soon forget.

“It’s very humbling to be with other veterans and the members of the board who put it together,” Ford said.

One of their “battle buddies” informed Ford and Coles of the positive nature of the organization.

Ford, who served two tours in Iraq, said his highlights on the trip included catching northern pike, catfish and walleye.

When asked about his highlight, Coles answered, “Just the hard work by an amazing committee who welcomed us.”

Coles said he made “lifelong buddies” during the tour.

Ford hopes to return for additional adventures in upcoming years. “As long as they let me and invite me,” Ford said.

Coles, who served in the military for 21 years, added that he knows of Purple Heart veterans who will love to take part in the fishing experience.

“I will spread the word,” Coles said.

The week ended with the organization’s largest fundraising event of the year at the Fort Peck Marina. The night included a live auction, pig roast, silent auction and a band.

Hoverson said the organization plans to keep on conducting the experiences that it has offered since 2015.

“It’s just amazing,” he said. In addition, the organization provides four cow elk hunts. They are looking at other ventures including working with the Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks to offer antelope hunting.

The organization’s goal is to ensure our veterans continue to have physical access to the country they served, in a mentally and emotionally stable environment, and are honored for their commitment and service to this nation. The organization is comprised of all volunteers who donate their time and passion honoring and supporting veterans.

All donations raised go toward providing memories, relationships and support.

If interested in making a donation, go to https://www. montanawarriorsonthewater. com/donations.

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